Young Scot has launched a national initiative to provide vital support services for young people in the Gaelic language. As part of the programme, young Scots will have access to online advice in Gaelic on everything from managing money to puberty to staying safe online.
The uptake of Gaelic lessons in schools across Scotland has risen 38% since 2017 and is set to keep growing. The new initiative aims to inspire more young people to try speaking Gaelic and features an exclusive nationwide partnership with bilingual bookseller Acair to offer 10% discount to Young Scot NEC cardholders on Gaelic, Scots and bilingual books and educational resources to help get people started.
The national project was launched at Young Scot head office in Edinburgh, where first time speakers and young Gaelic enthusiasts took part in an interactive Q&A with a panel including representatives from the Scottish Parliament. The event highlighted the benefits of young people learning the historic and culturally rich language in the modern world.
With a reported 70% of businesses saying Gaelic speaking employees are an asset to the company, Young Scot is encouraging young people across the country to develop their language skills and explore the career opportunities available. It is estimated that the Gaelic language is worth almost £150million to the Scottish economy and offers career prospects in industries ranging from tourism to education.
David Boag, Director of Language Planning and Community Developments at Bòrd na Gàidhlig said: “The aim of the National Gaelic Language Plan is that Gaelic is used more often, by more people and in a wider range of situations – and this is particularly important amongst young people. The launch of this resource will ensure that 675,000 Young Scot card have a new opportunity to use and to engage with Gaelic and we welcome this positive development.”
Ruairidh Hamilton, Gaelic Development Officer, at Young Scot, said: “We know developing language skills is a great way to strengthen career prospects available to Scotland’s young people. This project is a really exciting way for Young Scot to give Gaelic speakers the resources that they need and to showcase the benefits of adopting the Gaelic language in everyday life. We want young people to have easy access to advice and support that can help them achieve their future ambitions.”
To access information in Gaelic or for help to start learning Gaelic, please visit: young.scot/gaelic